Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering

, Volume 48, Issue 5, pp 2129–2139 | Cite as

Wear Assessment of Conical Pick used in Coal Cutting Operation

  • Saurabh Dewangan
  • Somnath Chattopadhyaya
  • Sergej Hloch
Original Paper


Conical pick is a widely used tool for cutting coal in mines. It has a cemented carbide tip inserted in a steel body. Cemented carbide has been in use for many years for coal/rock cutting because it has the optimum combination of hardness, toughness and resistance against abrasive wear. As coal/rock is a heterogeneous substance, the cutting tool has to undergo various obstructions at the time of excavation that cause the tool to wear out. The cracks and fractures developing in the cemented carbide limit the life of the tool. For a long time, different wear mechanisms have been studied to develop improved grades of cemented carbide with high wear resistance properties. The research is still continuing. Moreover, due to the highly unpredictable nature of coal/rock, it is not easy to understand the wear mechanisms. In the present work, an attempt has been made to understand the wear mechanisms in four conical picks, which were used in a continuous miner machine for underground mining of coal. The wearing pattern of the conical pick indicates damage in its cemented carbide tip as well as the steel body. The worn out parts of the tools have been critically examined using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) point analysis. Mainly four types of wear mechanisms, namely, coal/rock intermixing, plastic deformation, rock channel formation and crushing and cracking, have been detected. The presence of coal/rock material and their respective concentrations in the selected area of worn out surface were observed using the spectra generated by EDX analysis.


Conical pick Wear SEM EDX 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Saurabh Dewangan
    • 1
  • Somnath Chattopadhyaya
    • 1
  • Sergej Hloch
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Mechanical EngineeringIndian School of MinesDhanbadIndia
  2. 2.Faculty of Manufacturing TechnologiesTechnical University of Košice with a seat in PrešovPresovSlovak Republic
  3. 3.Institute of Geonics AS CR, v. v. i.Ostrava-PorubaThe Czech Republic

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